Special needs

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Siblings with FASD

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

An honest account of the fun and frustration involved in growing up with twin brothers who both have FASD.

When I was in kindergarten, my parents adopted two-year-old twin brothers. They brought with them a double-dose of both love and of calamity.

Diary of an Adoptive Mom #32

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

In the 32nd of our series, our mom of three kids--Emily, Grant, and Lynn--finally has some hope after she connects with an FASD key worker.

I can’t believe it - she actually understands us. Why did I wait so long to contact her?

Diary of an adoptive mom #33

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

In the 33rd of our series, our mom of three kids--Emily, Grant, and Lynn--finds a winter activity that all the family can enjoy.

We had so much fun! I’ve found an activity that suits all the family!

I hate winter and the thought of spending another season of timing everyone’s turn on the computer or video games, from November to March, was more than I could take. Perhaps I could take the kids skiing? I skied right up to my teen years. I had fun. They’d have fun too. Wouldn’t they?

Diary of an adoptive mom #34

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

In the 34th of our series, our mom of three kids finds it frustrating that her son’s teacher thinks he needs even more medication.

What is up with the push for Grant to be so heavily medicated? His teacher is driving me insane with her insistence that he’s not medicated enough.

Diary of an Adoptive Mom #35

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

In the 35th of our series, our mom finally receives a diagnosis for her daughter--and it’s not the one she’s expecting.

We just got the results from the assessment that was done on Lynn. I’m really conflicted about the information in that report.

Diary of an Adoptive Mom #36

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

In the 36th of our series, our mom struggles with a teacher who has quite a different view of her daughter’s needs.

I stand corrected - kind of. After having the FASD key worker go over Lynn’s assessment report with me, I’m somewhat calmer.

Thank goodness she had the patience and knowledge to read through the report with unbiased eyes. She reassured me that the report doesn’t say Lynn does not have FASD; the report says that there is not sufficient information to give a definitive diagnosis.

Diary of an Adoptive Mom #37

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

In the 37th entry in our series, our mom looks back at trials and triumphs, and says goodbye.

Of all the diary articles I’ve written for Focus on Adoption magazine over the past six years, this one has proven to be the most challenging of all, because it will be my final diary entry.

The original concept to write these diary entries arose from my own feelings of “I can’t be the only mom out there who is having a really tough time, can I?” I thought there might just be a few others out there who struggled as I do, that there must be other moms who:

Journey to recovery

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

This powerful story was the keynote speech at Growing Together: a retreat for parents of persons with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) in January 2010.

Hi, my name is Nicolas. First of all, I’d like to thank the organizers of this retreat for asking me here to share with you. I’d also like to thank and welcome all the parents and families for being here today.

Understanding the impacts of your child's early experiences on learning

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

The degree of stress your child experienced prior to adoption may significantly impact how his or her brain develops.

As an adoptive parent and a therapist, I am keenly interested in how my child’s early experiences impact her classroom performance and ability to learn. A recent experience at my daughter’s school reinforced how critical it is for teachers and parents to have information that will help educate them in a practical way to respond to children who have had significant early stress or trauma and are struggling to adapt to the school environment.

Give your child school intelligence

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

Dr Richard Lavoie, renowned expert on learning disabilities, recalls numerous occasions when parents have cried in despair in his office. These are not tears about their child’s school work—they are about how he or she is managing with the social side of school.

Lavoie gives two examples of social skills that most of us take for granted but that many learning disabled children find difficult.

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